Capital Murder Conviction Affirmed

Press Release from Henry Boyce

Third Judicial District Prosecuting Attorney Henry Boyce announced today the Arkansas Supreme affirmed the Life in Prison Without Parole plus 165 year sentence of Robert Reese Friar. Friar was found guilty by a Jackson County Jury last June after an eight day trial.

Friar, 37, of Newport, was found guilty of the charge of Capital Murder in the February 27, 2013 shooting death of Tacquari Briggs, 20 months old, as she lay in bed with her mother, Delana Aquirre, and her brother, Jarviyon Benneth. Briggs was struck by one bullet which traveled through her heart and lung killing her. Aquirre was struck by three bullets and survived the shooting. Friar was convicted of two counts of Attempted Capital Murder for shooting Aquirre in close proximity to Benneth.

In the early morning hours of February 27, 2015 Robert Friar stood outside the bedroom window of Delana Aquirre and fired seven shots at the bedroom window. Prosecutors argued the shooting was motivated by jealousy. Six shots entered the residence and one struck the outside window sill. For the seven bullets shot Friar was convicted of seven counts of committing a Terroristic Act.

Oral arguments were held during the Supreme Court’s “Appeals on Wheels” at the University of Arkansas Community College in Batesville on April 28, 2016. Attorney General Leslie Rutledge personally argued the case to the Court.

Friar was found guilty and sentenced for the following charges:
1. One Count of Capital Murder – Sentence Life without Parole
2. Two Counts of Attempted Capital Murder – Sentence 50 years
3. Seven Counts of Committing a Terroristic Act – Sentence 115 years

The jury recommended all sentences to be served consecutively for a total of Life in Prison without parole plus 165 years.

Boyce said, “This is easily one of the most significant cases I have ever taken to trial and I am happy the Supreme Court has upheld the decision of the jury.”

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